Shahid Kapoor
Mohar Basu (MID-DAY; January 23, 2017)

"Shooting is probably in Shahid Kapoor’s blood,” says Ronak Pandit, who bagged the gold in the Men’s 25m Standard Pistol category at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. Shahid, who plays the role of army man Nawab Mallik in Vishal Bhardwaj’s upcoming period drama, Rangoon, had approached Pandit to perfect the art of shooting for his turn.

“Shahid contacted me directly. We trained for over a week at my Malad and Worli centres,” Pandit informs hitlist. The duo stuck to the basics for the first two days, when Pandit taught the actor the methods of gripping the gun, perfecting the stance and aiming. “We did a lot of exercises to help him understand the technique of using the trigger. We followed the same training process that we do for the Olympics. We shot at different calibers and ranges and did precision shooting to get the angles right. He had a few long distance shots in the film and we wanted him to look convincing. On the last day, we went to the Worli range to shoot the firearm with real bullets,” says Pandit.

The athlete was thrilled to train Kapoor, who is credited for getting into the skin of his character. “Shahid is a really talented man and by day two, he seemed effortless. He picked up the tricks faster than I anticipated and his fitness made the process easier,” says Pandit, confessing that he admires the actor on a personal level too. “He is down to earth, almost like a college buddy. Also, given that he is punctual, working with him becomes easier.”

Ronak Pandit